Inauguration Day

photos of Edna Brewer students by Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group

I watched Barack Obama’s inauguration this morning at Edna Brewer Middle School with Jeni Frudden and her sixth-grade students. There were a few cheers, and a few quiet snickers, but they were quite a calm bunch for the most part.

I hear a group from Sankofa Academy, an elementary school in North Oakland, traveled to the Oracle Arena to watch the event on the big screen. Later today or tomorrow, we should get a dispatch from the Skyline High School crew that braved the cold and the crowds in D.C.

How else did your school or class mark the occasion? What struck you about the inauguration? Tell us about it.

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Maria Ku

    Oh, did you know that those students who stayed home for part of the morning to watch the inauguration ceremony (and came to school with parents notes saying so), were officially refused by OUSD to count this as a valid excuse for their couple-of-hours absense?

    Interesting, hah?

  • Nextset

    Maria, good for OUSD. These kids need to learn that they and their desires are not the center of the universe. If it was a school day, they and their parents don’t get to take off because they feel like it. Their feelings frankly don’t count here anymore than they would with an employer, the Army, or any other future responsibility the kids will undertake.

    There is such a thing as duty. You go to school because you have enrolled and you have a commitment to see it through. Stay home with a temperature. Or one of the posted reasons. The kids involved should have been in class with their classmates – and participated in whatever was set out for them. Inauguration or not.

    It’s lessons like these being taught at OUSD that makes one think that somebody down there in charge does get it.

  • district employee

    From the OUSD parent guide, pages 25 and 26 and appendix page 41)

    (a) Notwithstanding Section 48200 [California’s compulsory education
    requirement], a pupil shall be excused from school when the absence is:
    (1) Due to his or her illness.
    (2) Due to quarantine under the direction of a county or city health officer.
    (3) For the purpose of having medical, dental, optometrical, or chiropractic services rendered.
    (4) For the purpose of attending the funeral services of a member of his or her immediate family, so long as the absence is not more than one day if the service is conducted in California and not more than three days if the service is conducted outside California.
    (5) For the purpose of jury duty in the manner provided for by law.
    (6) Due to the illness or medical appointment during school hours of a child of whom the pupil is the custodial parent.
    (7) For justifiable personal reasons, including, but not limited to, an appearance in court, attendance at a funeral service, observance of a holiday or ceremony of his or her religion, attendance at religious retreats, or attendance at an employment conference, when the pupil’s absence has been requested in writing by the parent or guardian and approved by the principal or a designated representative pursuant to uniform standards established by the governing board.
    (8) For the purpose of serving as a member of a precinct board for an election pursuant to Section 12302 of the Elections Code.

    Basically, your kid has to be in school. I know Montera was set up to show the inauguration on campus, so s/he wouldn’t be missing out.

  • Maria Ku

    District Employee:

    Montera did NOT show inauguration on campus. They turned on the radio just for the President to say the oath and even that, partially.

    The next-door Joaquin Miller Elementary, by contrast, had a large-screen real-time viewing in the auditorium, with all the kids watching. They were ENCOURAGED by OUSD to do that and physically helped by OUSD to set up streaming to the large screen.

  • Nextset

    I think the schools should have shown the inauguration live. At least run the radio broadcasts. But these decisions are best left to the judgment and discretion of the school staff. It’s not that the students couldn’t see it later on reruns or recorded video – they can – It was a historic moment that I think the schools would do well to observe as a group. Relevant discussions could follow – like how important the Electoral College is to having a peaceful transition of power to a winner that must be acknowleged as having broad based support of the entire country, not just the West or the big states.

  • district employee

    Ms. Ku, Montera and Joaquin Miller received the same “encouragement” to broadcast this historic event on campus. Both sites have access to the same limited OUSD network and the same hardworking OUSD tech services support staff. Perhaps Joaquin Miller’s administration had more capacity to arrange in advance for the broadcast than Montera’s, but that is to be expected at a school with nearly 900 students and two administrators.

    I appreciate the enormity of the event, but Ed Code is Ed Code.

  • Maria Ku

    I stand corrected.

    I was told that most Montera’s classes got to watch the inauguration ceremony on their classroom TV. I guess my child was among the minority who didn’t get to.